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Old 05-05-2005, 09:01 PM   #1
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lack of information..

So I'm in my Business Ethics class, and we are covering the environment, and the professor asked a question, "do fish feel pain" So I responded that they do, some guy replied with "No they don't"

So I say fish get stressed out, they all laugh, pretty strange. So i explain the stress coat and all that stuff, they still seem sort of unimpressed. So the professor says "what does a fish do when its stressed," I explain all the stuff...

Just seems sort of strange, especially here at the college level, that people only think dogs and cats feel pain.

anyways, just thought id share what just went on in my class.

-thane
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Old 05-05-2005, 09:06 PM   #2
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My girlfriend is a biology major, and they had a discussion very much like like this in her senior level bio-ethics course just a couple weeks ago!

She was tempted to bring her whole class to our place just to show them how her puffer gets all excited when she comes in the room, and how he's like a real pet.

People are "ignant".

-brent
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Old 05-05-2005, 09:12 PM   #3
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Why are we discussing fish pain in a business ethics class? BTW Business ethics is an oxymoron.

Think of it this way thanew...how many aquarists were in that class? Just you right? There was a saying back in the 80's. I'll amend it for our purposes:

"It's a fish thing...you wouldn't get it"!
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Old 05-05-2005, 09:13 PM   #4
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Good for you for taking the time to explain stuff like that!

My favorite quote, which I got from here (and i wish I could give credit where credit is due, but i just can't remember which of you guys said it) is "just because they don't bark or meow doesn't mean they don't feel pain"
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Old 05-05-2005, 09:38 PM   #5
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There was a huge scientific debate not too long ago regarding whether or not fish feel pain, and I think they decided they do, but plenty of elite scientists insist they do not. Discussions like this will continue, and nobody will likely ever agree on it. We all know they react adversely to stress, though.
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Old 05-05-2005, 10:04 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jchillin
Why are we discussing fish pain in a business ethics class? BTW Business ethics is an oxymoron.

Think of it this way thanew...how many aquarists were in that class? Just you right? There was a saying back in the 80's. I'll amend it for our purposes:

"It's a fish thing...you wouldn't get it"!
well we were on some environmental ethics, and they were disucssing biocentrism and the such. it just popped up
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Old 05-06-2005, 01:41 AM   #7
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I was recently reading an article about pain assessment in laboratory animals. Dang if I can't find it now.
Basically, it said that the sensory inputs that we call pain evolved as a warning system to keep us from danger, and as a way of protecting us from further injuring ourselves. The article stated that pain is not a physiologic state of being - it is a sensory input that is perceived by the brain, just as certain wavelengths of light are perceived to have color. Therefore, it makes sense that different animals probably evolved different ways of perceiving pain. Nearly all animals with a developed nervous system possess sensory neural inputs that communicate the fact that something is wrong with the body - call it stress, or pain, or whatever you wish. The problem is that animals display pain in different ways, and because of this, it can be very difficult to assess the degree of pain or distress they are experiencing.

Do fish feel pain? Almost certainly. Is their experience of pain similar to ours? Who knows, but probably not.
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Old 05-06-2005, 09:47 AM   #8
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Exactly, Andy. You would assume that if fish felt pain like we do they would evolve to avoid situations that cause the pain, but the fish hook tells us that they must not.
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Old 05-06-2005, 10:33 AM   #9
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Time to end the debate. Based on the observations and statements made by QTOFFER and TankGirl, here's some common sense:

1. Fish do attempt to avoid situations that cause pain or stress. Witness their actions when being netted.
2. Fish go for hooks because we have tricked them. We put bait and lures on them to confuse the fish into thinking its a tasty treat.

So, fish can not only feel pain, they take steps to avoid it.
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Old 05-07-2005, 05:52 AM   #10
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Very interesting discussion.

People can only sense the world around them from a human perspective. We tend to assume that other species have at least similar perceptions and want to think that animals feel the same way we do.

If we're talking about sensory perceptions, consider that a dogs sense of smell is 700 times what ours is. There is just no way our species could even imagine what that must be like. Would it be annoying or pleasant to us? To a dog it's a major factor in how it perceives the world.

People have a real aversion to pain. I think it's because much of what we sense about the world is tactile. Our sense of touch is highly developed and acute. Because of this, we just may feel pain on a very different level then most other species. What do you think?
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